Thursday, August 9, 2018

What I'm Reading This Summer and Why I Can't Stop

A good book is scientifically proven to cure summer boredom


so imagine my delight
when two shipments of books arrived

just in time for summer


filled with


and an invitation to read


And somehow...

work reading spilled over into personal reading
as I managed to once again lose myself

find myself

in a book...



for girls of all "textures and shades"

"No matter who you are,
no matter where you come from,
you are beautiful. 

You are powerful.
You are brilliant.
You are funny. 

So the one message I want to leave you with is this:
the secret to everything in life -

every aspiration,
every opportunity-

is education"

-First Lady Michelle Obama

When my Pastor mentioned this New Testament magazine
I knew it would make for some great in-flight summer reading

(while on that same flight)

my cousin was reading "Year of Yes" by Shonda Rhimes
so when we returned home a trip to the public library proved necessary

currently reading...

And all of this good reading...
prompted me to release the next chapter of my book

"Having Eyes That See"
Life Lessons That Brought Me Closer to God
for now you can click here to read the first lesson
"You Are My Child"

What good books have you read lately?

Friday, July 27, 2018

The Things You Take For Granted

Earlier this year I began to draft two lists...

one list of things I want to experience
one list of things I have experienced

and in the drafting of these lists I have learned two things...

my life is full
my life is rich

and although there are MANY things

I have never done
I cannot afford
I may never have

my life is full
my life is rich


of the MANY things
I have experienced

I've found there

are MANY things
I have also taken for granted

giving birth
walking on the beach
riding a bike
crunching leaves
candles on a birthday cake

so many experiences that have not been given their full honor

and so today I'm reminding you to cherish...

your candles
your experiences
your life


10 candles
11 candles
12 candles


herish them
as you remember to

Count your blessings... and your candles!

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Summer Reading w/ Favorite Takeaways

One of the best parts of summer... is the reading! 

Here is my Summer 2018 reading list

Introducing the palate to new flavors made simple...

Cardamom Pear
Masala Chai
Strawberry Basil

(because self-care begins from the inside out)

So just...


When preparation meets opportunity...
mastering the art of YOUR perfect timing

(yes, it's different for each of us!)

Identify... cultivate... capture

We each have a certain skill set that,
when used properly, can catapult us into the next level

Instead of just bombarding children with a "LOT" of skills

Lower Order Thinking skills
(functional thinking)

Children need... HOT skills!

Higher Order Thinking Skills
(critical and creative thinking)

tools useful for

successfully answering questions and solving problems

teaching children how to think vs. what to think

"I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have
is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail"

Vivid photography and simple prompts as
"conversations starters"for the next time you see a...

Repurpose... recycle... reuse
(the how and why)

Lisa Murphy?
The importance of play?

Yes please, and thank you!

So... what are you reading this summer?

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Sixteen Candles... and Many More

We've celebrated...

16 candles
16 cakes
16 years




awe-inspiring wonder

and we're not done...

because when we say

we're grateful
for 16 candles

what we're really saying is that

we're grateful
for you

Happy 16 candles son... here's to many more!
There are many milestones in a man's life,
and he is blessed to have his father through them all

Friday, July 6, 2018

When You Can't Vacate... STAYcate!

It's Five Minute Friday, and ironically enough, the word is vacation

(which I just wrote about NOT getting here)

because when a full vacation isn't feasible



may just have to do!

Here are 5 things to try...

1. Do nothing for a day

Take a take a day off to do nothing

no work
no email
no laundry


2. Become a tourist in your own town

You've got to go where you've never been
to see what you've never seen...

Need ideas?
Visit for things to do in your city

3. Try something different

Like that new restaurant you've been wanting to visit...


an activity
an adventure
something interesting

Walking through the mall can be an adventure in itself

4. Put on your "Vacation Wear"

To get into vacation mode sometimes all you need are...

a smile

5. Let the sun in

Nothing says vacation like soaking up some Vitamin D and it can
be as easy as taking your lunch outdoors for a change of scenery

Here's to a lovely staycation!

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Summer in our Hometown

We love to board planes and travel during the summer as a family

It is a blessing

and something

I hadn't realized that I take for granted


until last year

when our schedules conflicted

preventing us
from leaving

the country
the state


forcing us
to find experiences

to enjoy


our hometown
Museum Tour
Took my kids to tour some of our local museums,
view art, and experience culture (FREE)

Outdoor Concert
Stopped by a local university to hear
hometown musicians share their talents (FREE)

Gospel Skate Night
When the neighborhood skating rink re-opens?
You lace 'em up and go!! (for a small fee)

Beach Day
We're in Southern California, so of course
we grabbed our towels and hit the beach! (FREE)

Television Taping
Hollywood is in our front yard, so we grabbed some
lunch and headed to the semi-finals of AGT (FREE)

Local Amusement Park
Just a few freeway exits away from a day's
worth of heart pounding adventure (NOT FREE!)

more ideas here

Share your Hometown adventures
email or leave a comment below...

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Exploring Art and Culture (with Movies)

Exploring "Art and Culture"
has been amazing and we have learned so much together!

start from the beginning

For our final months...

we rolled out the red carpet for a Free Movie Night
with snacks and activities for the providers and their families

Everyone loved "COCO" so much
we decided to culminate summer
with another FREE movie

Brunch and Saturday Matinee

"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly.
What is essential is invisible to the eye."

-The Little Prince